Eureka >> In softball, the term “battery” refers to the pitcher-catcher combination, as they are the engine that keeps the game moving.In Friday’s game against the Eureka Loggers, the Fortuna Huskies’ battery of pitcher Hailey Dolcini and catcher Jenna Christensen’s impact was felt in every aspect of the game — often with seismic results.Christensen, a senior, belted a two-run double to the left-center field gap to give the Huskies a 3-0 lead in the third inning, then walloping a 3-0 Alyssa …
Something strange happens in scientific journals and reports. Whenever they talk politics, it is almost always from a leftist point of view. Why is that? Did they arrive at that position by the scientific method? Is there something about the need for government funding that drives institutions to a leftist position? Whatever the reason, it’s not hard to find evidence that the secular science media have a pronounced blue streak. Nature is a prime example. It’s latest Editorial decries “hyper-partisan fighting” but worries about what a Republican victory in Congress will mean for science.1 The editorial advocates the president’s health-care bill, cap and trade, and embryonic stem cell research – all leftist agenda items unpopular with the majority – and blames Republicans for obstruction of progress: e.g., “The current Congress has failed to pass cap-and-trade legislation designed to limit US greenhouse-gas emissions, thanks chiefly to strong Republican opposition.” No Democrats were blamed for the political “poison.” Democrats were not even named, while Republicans were mentioned three times, always in a negative light. Nature also publishes letters to the editor designed to make conservatives look bad. In the latest issue, Richard Kool [Royal Roads U, British Columbia] claimed that science is a “threat to the far-right fringe.”2 He said, “The scorn of the US far-right ‘Tea Party’ fringe for science, particularly relating to sustainability, climate change and biodiversity, stems from a perceived threat to its idealized views of how the world should be.” By implication, leftists have no idealized views of how the world should be. He mentioned Climategate only to smear the conservatives who pointed it out, claiming they used the scandal to “discredit science as a method for understanding the world.” Compare this with a BBC News story about reforms taking place at the IPCC in the wake of the scandal. A news story in Nature evaluated the effect the Tea Party movement may have on science funding. Ivan Semenjuk mentioned “It is difficult to predict how all this will affect scientists and the government agencies that fund them,” and worried about conservative candidates coming to Washington who “are less committed to funding science research and education, and who lack ‘the general science and technology savvy’ to make informed decisions.” By implication, only leftists and Democrats have scientific savvy and are informed. Note the contrast: “In the current Democrat-controlled Congress, science was given plenty of attention in spite of the economic crisis.” Three other news articles in the same issue of Nature depicted Republicans as obstructionists. Jeff Tollefson, for instance, ended his article with quotes from Paul Bledsoe, whom he called a centrist: “Climate-science denial is a by-product of extreme partisanship and a kind of reactionary mode among conservatives, and I expect that this will wane,” he said. “But if large parts of the Republican Party begin to deny consensus science, then the climate community will have to confront them about it.”4. Similarly, Heidi Ledford portrayed Republicans as attackers of health-care research,5 standing in the way of the president’s health-care bill, which was actually strongly opposed by almost two thirds of American voters, and succeeded only with back-room deals and presidential arm-twisting last March even though Democrats controlled both houses of Congress. And Emily Waltz reported about unhappy scientists who are upset that Barack Obama, ranked the farthest-to-the-left Senator before he was elected President, who “promised a new era of integrity and openness for American science” after the election, has not worked faster to undo former President George W. Bush’s policies.6 In each of these articles, “science” was presented as a unilateral consensus in favor of policies that many Americans, particularly conservatives, consider leftist, costly, of doubtful scientific credibility, or even immoral (in the case of embryonic stem cell research; see 01/31/2009, 09/26/2010). But that’s just Nature. Do other science publications follow this leftist political line? New Scientist gave unrestrained print space to Chris Mooney, author of The Republican War on Science. Mooney now claims that the “Tea Party [is] luring US into adventures in irrationality” (cf. 02/27/2010 commentary). And why is that? Because many of them doubt the consensus about man-made global warming (cf. 05/25/2010). This was enough for Mooney to launch into tirades about “patriotic extremism,” disdain for science, anti-intellectualism, paranoia, and “conspiratorial fantasy” among conservatives, even though the Tea Party includes Democrats and independents fed up with big government. The BBC News reported that scientists are calling for “defence cuts” in order to fund scientific research. It would be hard to find any pro-Republican, pro-conservative science article in the secular news media. Pro-conservative views tend to be aired only on sites that question Darwinian evolution, such as the intelligent design blog Evolution News & Views. This clear lopsidedness in reporting indicates that there is something fundamental about world views which either embrace or criticize evolution that bleeds over into other subjects, like political philosophy, economics, and morality (07/23/2010). Another factor may be whether the spokesperson is on the giving or receiving end of the public dole (05/18/2009). A prominent fellow of the American Physical Society, Harold Lewis, illustrates something of the tension between the individual scientist and the scientific institutions. Lewis wrote an indignant letter explaining why he was resigning after 67 years (see IPCC). He felt that fund-grubbing had corrupted the society and its scientific practice so thoroughly that the APS no longer represented him or its original values. Describing the society’s response to the Climategate affair, “the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist” Lewis deplored the pompous airs of the leadership, “as if the APS were master of the universe,” he complained. “It is not, and I am embarrassed that our leaders seem to think it is. This is not fun and games, these are serious matters involving vast fractions of our national substance, and the reputation of the Society as a scientific society is at stake.” The APS responded denying the allegations; however, Lewis’s long tenure with the APS and impressive list of credentials cannot be easily dismissed. Long-time TV meteorologist Anthony Watts dissected the APS response and documented contradictions with a number of its claims to openness, integrity, and scientific rigor.1. Editorial, “Politics without the poison,” Nature 467, p. 751, 14 October 2010, doi:10.1038/467751a.2. Richard Kool, “Science as a threat to far-right fringe,” Letters to the Editor, Nature 467, p. 788, 14 October 2010, doi:10.1038/467788d.3. Ivan Semenjuk, “News: US midterm elections: Volatile forces shape US vote,” Nature 467, 759-760 (published online 13 October 2010), doi:10.1038/467759a.4. Jeff Tollefson, “News: US midterm elections: A chilly season for climate crusaders,” Nature 467, p. 762 (published online 13 October 2010), doi:10.1038/467762a.5. Heidi Ledford, “News: US midterm elections: Opponents battle health-care research,” Nature 467, p. 763, (published online 13 October 2010), doi:10.1038/467763b.6. Emily Waltz, “News Feature: Science & politics: Speaking out about science,” Nature 467, pp. 768-770 (published online 13 October 2010), doi:10.1038/467768a.Readers are encouraged to find examples that contradict the claim that pro-Darwin, secular science writers in the mainstream media and scientific institutions are predominantly leftist. There are sure to be some, but the leftist slant is, in our experience, so predictable that exceptions prove the rule (see 05/13/2010). So is the left really “pro-science” and the right “anti-science”? Hopefully our graduates of Baloney Detecting University are more skilled than to accept such false dichotomies, and our graduates of the history of science know better. Define science. Separate science as a concept from scientific institutions (06/25/2010). The latter often have soiled hands, being dependent either directly or indirectly on the public dole. Any institution that must fight for its survival on keeping government money flowing will necessarily promote big government and higher taxes – hallmarks of the left. Consequently they will try to portray science in terms of consensus, a monolithic entity composed of all those who stand to gain from public funding of their pet projects (cf. 09/15/2010). We speak here of the leadership, publicity and lobbying arms of such institutions; at any given institution there is undoubtedly a mix of liberals and conservatives at work. The arrogance of some of these people is astounding. They act like they own public money, that they are entitled to it. How would they like it if other citizens of this country – say Tea Party members – walked into their houses and demanded tribute, claiming it was owed to them? Public money is a limited commodity. It needs to be collected and spent wisely by a representative government according to well thought out priorities. The case needs to be made every year for why certain projects deserve funding, and these projects must have an understandable link to public interest. Numerous commentators write about wasteful spending on science (example at Wall Street Journal). Do we want $100,000 of taxpayer money going to UC Irvine scientists to study how US and Chinese students play World of Warcraft? (see Orange County Register). Some will remember former Senator Proxmire’s “Golden Fleece Awards” for wasteful spending. SETI was a winner back in the 1980s. Its proponents have had to survive on private funds ever since, though NASA pulled in millions for Astrobiology with the Martian Meteorite “useful lie” back in the 1990s (see 01/07/2005 commentary). Many worthwhile science projects, such as space exploration and cancer research, cannot be done by citizen scientists or private enterprise. Large research labs and universities will of necessity need foundation grants or government funds (but look how entrepreneurs are making inroads into space flight). Those paying the bill, whether the US government or foundations, have the right to decide what projects are in their interest. Oversight and scrutiny over spending should be valued, because hubris leads to fraud and abuse, which ultimately damages the reputations of scientific institutions. What if whistleblowers had not found the errors in Climategate? Contrary to what Chris Mooney thinks, he should welcome the input of conservatives as a necessary check on power. Scientists, after all, are only human (02/17/2010).(Visited 17 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Now The proliferation of tools, apps, and modern business practices has increased the number of distractions with the power to interrupt your work to a number just shy of infinite. When email was new and novel, a chime to notify you of a new message in your inbox was helpful. The inbox, the phone, and an open door were the only ways you might be distracted from your work. The new currency of excellence is focus, something that requires giving yourself over to what’s most important and avoiding distractions. If you want to do excellent—and meaningful—work, focus on one thing at a time.On a Need to Know BasisEmail: Your email program notifies you that you just received a message, something that might have been useful at a time before email became the primary form of communication. If you have your email notifications on now, the frequency of interruption matches the second hand on a clock, making the notification of an email something close to useless. Most people leave their inbox open, responding to email in real-time, opening themselves up to innumerable distractions, most of which are not worth the cost of shifting your focus.Chat: Your messaging service or chat program notifies you that some conversation you are part of has new messages. Because other people can tag you in those messages, you are interrupted when they seek your attention. The intention behind these programs is that you could catch up when it makes sense. But the tools initially designed to replace email communication more often resemble the telephone’s synchronous communication.Smartphone: The smartphone and its many applications provide an endless parade of notifications and distractions. Every application, from the task manager that is supposed to help you be more productive, to the social apps that are supposed to keep you connected to people, all come with notifications, each promising to keep you updated, and in doing so, robbing you of your focus. Add texting to this device, and you have the ultimate weapon of mass distraction.Open Workspace: If you are unfortunate enough to work in an open office space, you are plagued by the option for anyone to interrupt you at any time and for any reason. It’s also likely that you can’t get through dinner without picking up your phone every five minutes. Not that anyone notices while they engage with their smartphone.While all of these tools may be useful in some cases, do you need to know the information they provide now? Is each communication so valuable that you must stop what you are doing to review it, decide what it means, and respond to it? The answer is a resounding, “no!” Almost nothing requires your immediate attention.More Than One Thing at a TimeComputers are designed for multitasking. In some ways, humans are also capable of doing more than one thing at a time. But humans are not capable of doing two things that require their attention at the same time. You can drive to work without having to concentrate on the route and listen to the radio, that pattern having been burned in over time. You can wash the dishes and talk to someone at the same time without any trouble. But some tasks require your full focus and attention.You cannot read an email and write a report at the same time. Nor can you have a meaningful conversation with someone you care about while answering your email and checking every text message as it arrives. When you are doing more than one thing at a time, you are not multitasking. Instead, you are shifting your attention between the different tasks.There is no single outcome you might generate that is improved by shifting your attention to every potential distraction. The opposite, however, is true; you significantly improve your results when you give yourself over to some piece of work.Giving Yourself Over to Your WorkI am using the word “work” broadly here. Work means some outcome you need to create, be it a work project or task or date night. Because it is possible for your body to be in one place and your mind somewhere else, giving yourself over to your work requires that you bring them together in the same spaceThe way to give yourself over to work is to focus on one task at a time for, say, ninety minutes. To do so, you have to refuse to allow anything else to capture any small part of your attention.If everything is important enough to deserve your attention, then nothing is important. When you assign the same value to an email or text message as the conversation you are having with someone on your team, you are surely undervaluing the more important of the two. When you stop working on your most important project or initiative because your phone notified you that someone commented on your social post, you are assigning too much value to something with no chance of creating the same long term value as your most important project.Writing This PostAs I am writing this post, I have a single application open. I have no web browser on my screen. The notifications function on my laptop is completely disabled. It is very early in the morning, and there is little chance anyone will need—or want—my attention.My smartphone is on the desk, but it is in Do Not Disturb mode, allowing no texts or calls except for the people in my favorites list, which includes my family members. All the notifications on all the applications on my iPhone are turned off, as I refuse notifications from all apps when I install them, with very few exceptions, my calendar being the primary app I allow to notify me. As I am writing this, my phone chimed to let me know I have a meeting in ten minutes. I can get so focused that I lose track of time, which makes that a notification worth allowing.I have written close to a thousand words in about forty-five minutes, something that might have taken more than two hours had I not given it my full and undivided attention.Excellence is in the OutcomesIn a world where almost everyone has forfeited the right to give themselves over to something long enough to do excellent work, doing so makes you a stand out. You cannot do anything with excellence when you allow your focus to be pulled this way and that by the trivial.
Amid the tension between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena over power-sharing, the BJP’s Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament Sanjay Kakade has claimed that nearly 45 of the 56 newly-elected Shiv Sena Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) in Maharashtra were keen on joining hands with the BJP in a bid to expedite the process of government formation.“Just like within the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), there is a group which holds leaders like Chhagan Bhujbal, Jayant Patil or Ajit Pawar in high regard, there are sections within the Sena who have high regard for many of their leaders, who I will not name… These leaders are in touch with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and are extremely keen on forming a government with the BJP as quickly as possible,” said Mr. Kakade, a Pune-based realtor. He also said the MLAs, anxious to form the new government soon, had allegedly urged the chief minister to settle (power-sharing) issues with Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray soon and form the government. “At least 45 of the 56 newly-elected Sena MLAs are directly and clearly stating that they want to go along with the BJP. They do not wish to go anywhere else,” Mr. Kakade said.Ratnagiri MLA incensedMr. Kakade’s statement has incensed the senior Sena leader and MLA from Ratnagiri, Uday Samant, who alleged that the BJP MP was deliberately attempting to ‘defame’ his party’s legislators with such remarks. Mr. Samant said Mr. Kakade’s remarks on the Sena MLAs were “unfortunate”, and brought out Mr. Kakade’s political ineptness. “The allegiance of the Shiv Sena’s MLAs is aligned with [late Sena founder] Bal Thackeray’s thinking and Uddhav Thackeray’s leadership. So, instead of alleging that Sena MLAs are in touch with the Chief Minister, he ought to stick to one party and prove his allegiance there,” Mr. Samant said. “He is doing it for his own political ends in the hope that he will gain something in the event Mr. Fadnavis becomes chief minister again.”A known party-hopper and wheeler-dealer, Mr. Kakade was earlier with Sharad Pawar’s NCP before being elected as an Independent to the Upper House and switching allegiances with the BJP. He is believed to have played a vital role in engineering the saffron party’s victory in the Pune civic polls in February 2017.In March this year, prior to the Lok Sabha polls, Mr. Kakade had announced that he would soon be entering the Congress after being denied a ticket for the Pune Lok Sabha seat. However, the BJP MP’s announcement was not taken too kindly by Congress loyalists in Pune, most of whom were opposed to Mr. Kakade’s induction in the party. Mr. Kakade chose to remain in the BJP after learning that there was no guarantee that he would be get a Congress ticket to contest from Pune Lok Sabha constituency.His disenchantment with the BJP ahead of the Lok Sabha election stemmed from the allegedly ‘shoddy’ treatment meted out to him by the then Pune Guardian Minister Girish Bapat and the erstwhile BJP State president Raosaheb Danve.In December 2017, Mr. Kakade had created a flutter after he predicted a dismal showing by the BJP in the Gujarat elections.
The 2019 Cricket World Cup got underway on May 30. Plenty has happened since. West Indies announced their intentions with a bullying victory over Pakistan. Pakistan bounced back after a shambolic defeat to stun England and David Warner endured booing to steer Australia to victory over a gutsy Afghanistan.In short, it has been a gripping first week at the 2019 World Cup. Yet, the game’s biggest superstars have not yet arrived on the park. India will begin their campaign on Wednesday at Southampton against South Africa who are reeling from defeats to England and Bangladesh and the loss of Dale Steyn to a shoulder injury.It has been a strange build-up for the Indians in the lead-up to this World Cup. In 2015, India had spent months in Australia before storming to the semifinals. The 2011 World Cup was played at home which India won. 2019 has been a different story.While most other teams played intense internationals and spent enough time together to gear up, India played their last ODI on March 13. India have since only played the Indian Premier League and then two warm-up matches, one of which they lost.All geared up – @imVkohli & Co. not willing to take South Africa lightly ahead of World Cup opener #TeamIndia #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/pD6I3YEEViBCCI (@BCCI) June 4, 2019But Virat Kohli is far from worried. His bowlers are in top shape. The openers – Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan – did not get many runs in the warm-ups but these two men always get in the groove in big tournaments. Virat Kohli is never far away from an impact innings – the top 3 are therefore not much cause for concern.advertisementWhat could worry India is their middle-order. After some sweating and worrying, India seem to have zeroed in on KL Rahul for the No.4 spot but Dinesh Karthik and Vijay Shankar could still give him a run for his money.Then there are the likes of MS Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, Japsprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami who select themselves.India are the rockstars of world cricket. They have been among the most dominant teams in World Cups this century. They reached the final in 2003 and won the tournament in 2011 after being knocked out of the group stages in 2007. In 2015, India reached the semifinals before losing to Australia. Again.In 2019, almost every expert believes India and England will play the final provided both teams play to their potential.India have a huge fan following in England. They love playing in England as was evident in the Champions Trophy in 2013 and 2017. When India play, the cricket world watches in awe.Indeed, India struggled in England last year when they lost the ODI and the Test series but they are a different team in ICC events.In 2013, India reached the final of the Champions Trophy and won. In 2014, India made it to the final of the T20 World Cup and lost. In 2015 and 2016, India reached the finals of the 50-over and T20 World Cups. In 2017, India reached the final of the Champions Trophy. That’s staggering consistency.No wonder then, fans expect the world from India in England this year. And, they will turn up in numbers to cheer for the team across England. Indians from India and from the world over have landed up in England to make it a party to remember for the ages.Also Read | India in their World Cup openers: 5 wins and 6 defeatsAlso Read | World Cup 2019: India confident of defending any total, feels Virat KohliAlso See: